Discipleship · Holidays · Marriage · Rooted in Christ

Serving Together in Marriage {Deeply Rooted Magazine}

There are so many things I love about Valentine’s Day. Making our own Valentine’s cards and crafts, baking cupcakes or cookies with red hearts on top, sharing in our children’s joy and all their little Valentine’s cards and treats that they give and receive from friends, and just taking time to make the day a family and friends celebration of love, ultimately of God’s extravagant love for His people. These are some of the ways we love to celebrate.

As I think about Valentine’s Day, I also reflect on the love I share with my husband and how God has worked in and through our marriage. Today I am sharing some of my heart about marriage, ministry and serving together over on Deeply Rooted Magazine.

Marriage is a picture of Christ and His covenant relationship with the Church. It is an image of God’s intentions in His redemptive plan of salvation. The Church is Christ’s Bride here on Earth with a mission to go out into the world to share the gospel and disciple believers (Mark 16:15). Will not God who has designed marriage to reflect these things, strengthen our marriages when we serve in a way that portrays the function of this image? One way my husband and I have strengthened our marriage is by serving together. -Deeply Rooted Magazine

As I look back over the years, the miles we’ve traveled and the opportunities we’ve had to serve alongside one another for God’s glory, my heart is content with joy. This is God’s work that He prepared for us to enjoy together. The picture above is one memory I have of a trip we took to Papalote, Mexico a few years ago. My husband was to be teaching at a Bible Institute and we had the wonderful opportunity of hearing about the work God is doing in that part of the world. This painting, hanging in the home of a missionary couple held a real life story of God’s faithfulness in reaching the lost in a nearby village. Hearing and experiencing these stories of the gospel reaching the nations is a treasure we share together.


One of the great outcomes of serving together is the shared joy of seeing fruit produced from mutual service in others’ lives. A shared experience of storing up spiritual treasures in Heaven brings an eternal perspective to the purpose of your marriage. Some of the greatest fruit we have seen serving together in ministry has been to witness lives changed, hearts comforted and people discipled. –Deeply Rooted Magazine

You can read the rest of this post at Deeply Rooted Magazine.

With the love of Christ,


homemaking · Marriage · Motherhood · Parenting · Rooted in Christ

The Slackline and The Myth of Balance


The waves lapped calmly toward the shore as the young man hovered above the water, putting one foot in front of the other on the slackline. Captivated by curiosity, onlookers paused in their stroll along the boardwalk that hugged the shoreline of the bay. As we watched from a distance, hoping for his successful crossing, yet humorously knowing a short fall and a refreshing splash could be the outcome, we watched as he artfully traversed the line, swaying in the air, and at long last, the pull of gravity, a slight wind, and a misplaced step brought him into the salty ocean water.

Balance is something we strive for in our fast-paced society. Self-help books line the shelves of shops and offer us hope for finding the perfect way to schedule and orient our daily activities so we can accomplish more, utilize our time more efficiently, and help us to produce maximum output at minimal stress, the perfect balance of work, play and rest. But balance never seems to come, as if it were some illusory and unattainable goal.

One of my husband’s seminary professors recently challenged his students that perhaps balance is a myth. It is widely held that balance is something we can achieve and is necessary for our health and well-being. But could it be that if we are always seeking this and never finding it, that perhaps it is a false idea. It is so ingrained in our society, that to think of not pursuing balance seems ludicrous. Perhaps we are not meant to pursue balance, but instead to pursue faithfulness.

When the young man was attempting to cross the slackline, he was seeking balance, yet never finding it. He was teetering to the left and to the right the entire way. Trying to resist a sudden gust of wind, or pulling away from the gravity that sought to bring him down, he shook and swayed and kept moving forward because to stop would cause a certain fall. And fall, he did, never achieving balance if but for half a second. Though he inevitably fell off the line, he seemed to enjoy the water in the cool of the summer evening, cheers went up and he got right back on the line to try again. His commitment to practicing and moving forward was what got him across and accomplishing his goal.

As I plan out the various aspects of my role as a Christian, wife, mother, church worker, homemaker, birth doula, writer, and whatever other roles I take on, I am realizing that balance might just be a myth. As we try to order and prioritize our responsibilities, we need to seek faithfulness instead of balance.

When I have a sick child at home, I may not be able to serve in Sunday School that day, but care for my child at home. When a client calls me to a birth, I may need to stop cooking a meal, call a friend to watch my kids while I run to assist a woman in labor. If my child is successfully taking a nap, and all is well in my home, I may be able to carve out 30 minutes to write an article for a non-profit ministry that I serve. But if my child wakes up early and my plans are interrupted, I need to close my computer, put down my book, stop writing my grocery list, or leave a bathroom half cleaned, and pull that little one onto my lap for a story, and refocus my attention on this dear one.

Often I feel the gravity pulling me in more than one direction. In that moment, I need to set my eyes on Christ, take a deep breath and ask the Lord how to put one foot in front of the other, allowing myself the freedom to sway and shake, but faithfully moving forward, putting the most important things first, and letting everything else fall into place in their time. At times, I may take a misstep, and fall unabashedly into the water below. But hopefully, I will surface with a laugh, a shake of the head and keep moving forward with one foot steadily in front of the other, seeking not balance, but faithfulness.


Holidays · Marriage

My First Valentine & A Recipe

DSCN2344I was 29 years old when I celebrated February 14th with my very first Valentine. It was spent with my husband in the Swiss Alps about a month and a half after we got married. We were on a three month semester abroad trip for his Bachelor of Arts degree in Worship Arts, traveling Europe, visiting several Christian communities and churches as well as a 6 week stay at L’Abri! I had waited my entire life for my future husband, the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with and God blessed me with the sweetest Valentine’s Day. It was worth the wait.

I would be lying though if I painted this beautiful portrait without also sharing the struggles. We had our fair share of mishaps that week as we tried to figure out how we wanted this day to look for us. Oh, newlyweds! I was afraid that my first Valentine’s Day wouldn’t be all that I had thought it should be. It was an inward battle of fighting the culture’s ideals or big business companies’ ideas of what Valentine’s Day should be. I was fighting the temptation to make an idol out of this romantic holiday. But God’s grace met us where we were at. After all these inner struggles were finally resolved, our day ended up being quite a celebration!


We were staying at L’Abri where all our meals were provided with our stay, however, we rarely had real orange juice and Craig knew that was my favorite. We were poor and we couldn’t afford much, but we could afford real orange juice! That morning, I awoke to a half gallon of it sitting on my desk which was like gold! A bouquet of white winter tulips as on our wedding day, and a hand written love note with personal artwork, one of Craig’s romantic trademarks in our relationship,  I was delighted.

He took me to the ski village of Villars just up the hill from L’Abri. We walked along winding roads and forest trails. We talked about our dreams, our future. He took me to a chocolatier and we had the most delicious hot chocolate in the world. Melted chocolate in a small pot poured into steamed milk, overlooking the towering Alps that surrounded us. We had dinner at an unassuming Thai restaurant, a small, empty hole in the wall type of place, but the food was delicious as it usually is in those hole in the wall type places!


Its fun to remember these special moments and see how far we’ve come through the past nine years of marriage! Grace upon waves of grace. Years of making heart cookies with icing, making paper cards with the kids, little hands cutting out paper hearts, and icing covering chubby cheeks, remembering the real reason for this holiday which is the story of St Valentine, a man who lived his life for Jesus.

A few years ago, I found a recipe on Sally Clarkson’s blog for Valentine Shortbread Cookies. I love it because it doesn’t have that much sugar and its fast and easy to make. Besides cookie recipes, she has so much wisdom and good mommy food for the soul.

Celebrate your loved ones, read about St Valentine, and take pictures of all the messes made! For some good children’s book ideas to learn about St Valentine, hop on over to my friend, Thea’s, children’s book blog! There are treasures there!

Happy St Valentine’s Day!